This week, I had the pleasure of chatting with Miranda Pearce - co founder of SkinViva and mindset guru. She explained how she came into the world of aesthetics, how she helps practitioners grow and overcome their fears and anxieties, and what lies ahead for her in the future.
Hi Miranda! You do so much work with aesthetic practitioners and obviously play an integral role at SkinViva. How did you get into the aesthetics world?
Dr Tim Pearce (my husband) and I founded SkinViva clinic back in 2008. Tim had been working as a doctor and, in February 2008, he did an aesthetics course after talking to a friend who recommended trying it. He absolutely loved it and pretty soon decided he wanted to start a business, and he asked me to come on board and help set up SkinViva. At that time, I was working as a complaints manager in the public sector, but knew I was soon going to be made redundant. At first, I found the idea of working together scary, so, I carried on my commutes into the centre of Manchester. But, gradually, I started falling in love with the idea and decided to just go for it. So, initially, I started managing his diary and working as customer services director, but in the September, the credit crisis hit - just as we were getting started! That was a really stressful time as a new business.
In the following January, though, I started feeling more positive again, and I could see that - despite everything that was going on - we were, actually, going from strength to strength. I went full-time in the April and pretty soon we grew the salon base to 20 salons!
The next big milestone for us was in 2011 when we brought Lee and Gillian on board, who I’d worked with in the public sector - and Lee quickly took us up to 90 salons! Then, we hit another milestone in 2013 when we got our premises and started SkinViva Training school. That was a really exciting time.
At the end of 2019, the woman we’d had on board as our marketing lead went on maternity leave, so we brought someone else in but it just didn’t work out. All of the three board members said I should do it because I’d been growing my own personal brand successfully, and had been learning so much about marketing, so I took the plunge and really enjoyed it. That year, we started webinars, which were - and have continued to be - really popular, and have been especially helpful for practitioners during lockdown, while face to face group events have been cancelled.
That’s an incredible journey! And how did you get into the mindset side of things?
In 2016, as I went deeper and deeper into the business, I hit a wall and reached a point where I was full on mum of two small children and leader of around 20 people. I was totally overwhelmed and hid in front line tasks instead of delegating.
Every evening, after putting the kids to bed, I would be on the kitchen floor in the fetal position, and I knew something had to change. Thankfully, it wasn’t long before it did. One day in July 2016, I came across a Facebook Live with personal development coach Tony Robbins, who would go on to change my life forever.
After listening to him, I realised the way I was feeling wasn’t a problem with me - it was a pattern of behaviour, and that behaviour could be changed. I was so ready, and realised that I could see my potential on the other side.
That October, I set up my Instagram account, and I started writing posts every day. I also showed up to the SkinViva Training Facebook group and introduced myself - and I started talking and offering advice and help. Primarily, the group was about medical topics, but I was there helping out and talking about mindset and topics like Imposter Syndrome. I knew I had the knowledge but not the skill, so I got a coach, and I started learning as much as possible.
That summer, I started self sabotaging again, though - repeating old patterns. We went on a family holiday to Tenerife, and while we were there, I wasn’t feeling great. I took some time out on the last day to write - and I kept writing, and writing, and writing. I went on Facebook and saw that someone on there was feeling really anxious, so I did a video there and then on how to overcome anxiety and I just went on this massive high. We got on the plane that evening and the guy sitting next to me said, “I can’t not say something - you’re giving off so much positive energy.” We got chatting and it turned out he’d just lost his wife, and I coached him on that journey. A few days later he messaged me saying I’d changed his life, which was just incredible.
I thought to myself, I need to start a Facebook group specifically around mindset so, in 2018, I created the Mindset Warriors - a mindset group for people in the industry - which is one of the biggest and friendliest mindset groups out there. We’re so open and it is a real safe space, and that’s great because this industry can be so triggering for so many reasons.
After seeing the positivity that was coming from the Facebook group, in June, 2018, I decided I wanted to do a live event - the Cliff Jump Academy - all about getting people to be brave, and it was amazing and completely life changing. It was a great way for everyone to come together and talk about their experiences and fears and hopes for the future, and I took them through a process that explained how they could face their fears and get to where they wanted to be. Then, the next year, I did an even bigger event, and absolutely loved it!
Sounds amazing! And it’s great to hear about your own personal successes as well as how you help practitioners with theirs. What are the most common issues practitioners come to you with?
With regards to my mindset work, I help aesthetic practitioners overcome several key issues. The main ones they come to me with are: self doubt - the “why would anyone come to me?!”; complications anxiety - that feeling of, “oh my God! I’m going to ruin someone’s face and then I’m going to lose my job, and then I won’t be able to feed my family”; overwhelm - feeling run off their feet with family life, working for the NHS and trying to run their own business; ‘comparisonitis’ - which is when a practitioner worries that other practitioners are better than them; and resentment and anger over haters - which can be in the form of people telling them on social media that they don’t like their work, associations ganging up on them or their aunty telling them that doing aesthetics is not being a real nurse.
Practitioners often say that they struggle with marketing, but I always say that if you took the number of hours you spend worrying and just did some marketing, your business would flourish and you’d feel so much better, but often we’d rather stay in a bad situation that we know - because we’re comfortable in it - than take a step in a different and positive direction.
I love helping practitioners take that step and fall in love with themselves!
Sounds exciting! 2020 was a testing year for everyone. What kept you sane?
For me, my family and business. It was a difficult year and a lot happened, but I think it’s important to look back at the shit storm and think, ‘what did I learn?’ and ‘how am I going to honour the pain I felt?’
You were really vocal about Jennifer Lopez when she stated recently that she hasn’t had Botox and it’s ‘not her’. Why do you think celebs like her hide their tweakments?
The cynical part of me thinks she was trying to start a fight - almost like a PR stunt - by saying that treatments like Botox are not for her and denying that she gets them. But we, as humans, don’t like to be seen to have an unfair advantage. She wants people to think she’s worth every penny and that she’s just the way we see her - without having had any work done.
I have a personal belief that we should take personal responsibility for our own state and internal world. If I hear someone like J-Lo saying publicly that she disagrees with people who have Botox, that annoys me. There are lots of ‘undecided Annies’ out there who are, perhaps, thinking about getting a treatment like Botox and who need to be able to make their own decisions in a safe space. Yes, maybe you could say that they shouldn’t listen to J-Lo, but they're not in that headspace yet. They're still trying to make up their minds and should be allowed to do so without judgement. There’s already too much of that.
Such a good point! What’s the future of aesthetics?
I’d like to see more regulation in the aesthetics industry, because, otherwise, someone is going to die. But, from a personal point of view, I want to see individuals have a mindset change. So many people leave the industry feeling overwhelmed, and go back to the NHS feeling like they’ve failed, whereas, if they fight through the pain, they’ll come out the other side stronger. This industry is so triggering for so many people, but mindset can really help them. I want them to fall in love with themselves and prove to themselves they can achieve their dreams.
What are your main goals and ambitions for the future?
The next big thing is that I’m offering my own marketing course - The Dream Customer Attraction Method - which is my approach to marketing and is all about attracting your kind; your tribe. It’s also focused around persona work and knowing how to call out customers. I’m working with three amazing mentees at the moment to help them boost their marketing and they’re doing so well. I’m really looking forward to helping more in the future - I love it!
I’m not a massive ‘thinker aheaderer’ but, in the future, I’d love to speak on big stages, helping people overcome issues and achieve their goals.
Thanks, Miranda! That sounds amazing! Wishing you every success with it.